It is easy to determine that here in America we crave a simpler way of living. Take a few minutes to browse around Pinterest, Facebook, or look in the latest self-help book and you will see a dozen and ten ways to live a more simple lifestyle.
So why then do we not have it? Why do we not live a simple life? I mean technically, it is not hard. You just live within your means, do not buy crap you do not need/want/use, and you will be happy. So why are we not?
Contentment, plain and simple contentment. We want a simple life but we are not even content with the lives we currently have. We are not blooming where we are planted. Instead, we are relocating our wants so often that we cannot grow anything but weeds.
This is where I am currently. My hubs and I have a huge goal of owning a homestead, 100 percent debt-free. It is a big goal. We want a homestead of no less than sixty acres and we want to actually be able to live off the land, which means expensive equipment like tractors, cattle, and a house for us to live in. It is going to take us a little while to get there.
If you follow my goals update posts, you know that we are attempting to pay off my student loans this year. After those loans are paid for, the only debt we will have will be our mortgage. We are nowhere near the homestead dream yet and that is where my problem is.
I want it now. I want to live on that homestead right now. I want to walk out my front door and trip over a chicken while I am walking to the barn to go milk the cow (which, I have never milked a cow before so why I really cannot wait to do this I have no idea….). I do not want to have to wait the possible ten-plus years it is going to take to live out our dream of a debt-free simple life on our homestead.
I am discontent. I am discontent with where I currently am in my life because I have fallen victim to the marketing that has instilled in me the instant gratification mindset. Three years ago, my hubs and I did not have the dream of a homestead. We just wanted to own a house like everyone else and keep up with the Joneses. We bought our home with no intention of moving or selling it in the next twenty years. Then after some very long late-night talks, we both realized that we wanted something different. We wanted to live the life of homesteaders. We have made plans to get us there but these plans are going to take years to play out.
That is the problem with setting goals and that is why we so often fail to achieve them. We are so caught up in wanting to achieve the goal right now that we forget that long-term goals take time. Long-term goals are met because numerous short-term goals were met along the way to meeting the long-term goal.
I can spot discontentment quickly in others. Looking at what others pin on Pinterest or their Facebook status updates will let you know just how discontent they are. Problem is, that I have trouble identifying discontentment within myself. Maybe you have the same problem. I think most of us do.
Part of my goals this year is to keep a gratitude journal and to actually live my life, not just run the race. Keeping a gratitude journal has proven to me my discontent and has made me have to find contentment with where I am currently, because where I am right now is not half bad, it is a great place to be. The happiest people on this earth are the ones that are content, truly content. They no longer buy into the “you are what you drive” mentally. They do not care if your car costs what they make in a year and they do not care if your house is fifteen times larger than theirs is, because they are content with where they are. They do not have time for the comparison game and keeping up with what the Joneses are going broke over.
If you are discontent with where you are in life right now, look around you and find hope, peace, and something to live for. Chances are there is contentment somewhere near you. “If you aren’t content in your current house, you won’t be content in the spare bedroom of your next house”, wise words spoken by Dave Ramsey. I am working on finding contentment with the fact that it will be a while before we are living the homestead dream. I encourage you if you are discontent to find contentment and to bloom where you are planted.
Where are you working on finding contentment?
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